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AFCON final coaches both locals for first time since 1998

Algeria coach Djamel Belmadi gives an instruction during an Africa Cup of Nations group match against Kenya in Cairo

CAIRO, Egypt, July 18 – The Africa Cup of Nations final between Algeria and Senegal in Cairo Friday will pit local coaches against each other in a title decider for the first time in 21 years.

Algerian Djamel Belmadi and Senegalese Aliou Cisse are both former national team midfielders whose playing careers included spells with English clubs.

Belmadi was loaned to Manchester City from Marseille in 2003 and later had two seasons with Southampton.

While Cisse spent most of his career at French clubs, he also lined up for Birmingham City and Portsmouth.

Cisse is particularly desperate to win in Cairo as his missed shootout penalty in the 2002 final against Cameroon condemned Senegal to defeat in their only previous final appearance.

The last final featuring two African coaches was in 1998 when Egypt, coached by Mahmoud el Gohary, defeated Ephraim ‘Jomo’ Sono-coached South Africa 2-0 in Ouagadougou.

An endless debate among African football followers is the merits of local and foreign coaches and the Cup of Nations offers no help because foreigners have won 16 titles and locals 15.

Egyptian Hassan Shehata holds the record for consecutive triumphs with three and Ghanaian Charles Gyamfi has also won three, but not in a row.

France-born Herve Renard is the only coach to win with two countries, guiding outsiders Zambia to success in 2012 and repeating the feat with the Ivory Coast three years later.

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Cup of Nations-winning coaches

1957  Egypt      Mourad Fahmy

1959  Egypt      Pal Titkos (HUN)

1962  Ethiopia   Ydnekatchew Tessema

1963  Ghana      Charles Gyamfi

1965  Ghana      Charles Gyamfi

1968  Zaire      Ferenc Csanadi (HUN)

1970  Sudan      Jirí Starosta (CZE)

1972  Congo      Adolphe Bibanzoulou

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1974  Zaire      Blagoje Vidinic (SRB)

1976  Morocco    Gheorghe Mardarescu (ROM)

1978  Ghana      Fred Osam-Duodu

1980  Nigeria    Otto Gloria (BRA)

1982  Ghana      Charles Gyamfi

1984  Cameroon   Radivoje Ognjanovic (SRB)

1986  Egypt      Mike Smith (WAL)

1988  Cameroon   Claude le Roy (FRA)

1990  Algeria    Abdelhamid Kermali

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1992  I. Coast   Yeo Martial

1994  Nigeria    Clemens Westerhof (NED)

1996  S. Africa  Clive Barker

1998  Egypt      Mahmoud el-Gohary

2000  Cameroon   Pierre Lechantre (FRA)

2002  Cameroon   Winfried Schaefer (GER)

2004  Tunisia    Roger Lemerre (FRA)

2006  Egypt      Hassan Shehata

2008  Egypt      Hassan Shehata

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2010  Egypt      Hassan Shehata

2012  Zambia     Herve Renard (FRA)

2013  Nigeria    Stephen Keshi

2015  I. Coast   Herve Renard (FRA)

2017  Cameroon   Hugo Broos (BEL)

Winning coaches by nationality

5: Egypt, France

4: Ghana

2: Hungary, Serbia

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1: Algeria, Belgium, Brazil, Congo Brazzaville, Czech Republic, Ethiopia, Germany, Ivory Coast, Netherlands, Nigeria, Romania, South Africa, Wales

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